The Goat FAQ

Posted on August 22nd, 2009

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How are the surf forecasts done?

The surf forecasts are compiled from detailed examination of the entrails of
a Goat.

Who is the Goat?

The Goat appeared one day floating off the Warriewood Sewer Outfall after heavy
rain caused an overflow malfunction. Its entrails became wrapped around Roger’s
leg while he was surfing and they’ve been together ever since.

The Goat continues in the tradition of his illustrious ancestors in Ancient
Greece (or was it Rome?) whose guts were ripped open and the entrails examined
by the High Priest to forecast whether or not the coming season would be plentiful

The Federal Government has in fact used this method for many years for its
economic forecasts – though not very skillfully.

Who is Roger?

Roger Sayers has surfed and lived most of his life on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.
Having been a boardrider since the early sixties, there aren’t many places on
Australia’s East Coast that he hasn’t surfed, as well as making the pilgrimage
to Hawaii, etc.

He currently rides both a shortboard and a longboard, usually at North Avalon.
His three daughters also surf.

It is Roger’s onerous task to roll up his sleeves, get his hands dirty and
interpret what the Goat’s Guts say about the surf.

How accurate are the forecasts?

They’ve been unofficially clocked at around 85-90 per cent accuracy – which
is better than sticking your finger in the air.

What kind of data are examined?

Most of the raw data are on the Net – except for the starting point, which
is for Roger to look out the window. This is followed by plugging in the Goat.
The Goat is online and has a zipper to enable endless reuse – we are so environmentally

The stuff that the Goat digests includes weather maps, swell maps, satellite
photos, etc – like the icons you can click on at the side of the Surf Report Page.

The Goat’s inbuilt supercomputer analyses the data. A bit of judgment is
then mixed in to get to the guts of the matter.

You can try this yourself. Or you can just read the summary done for you!

Acknowledgments and thanks

Thanks to the following organisations who provide the raw data on the Net.
They are not responsible for the Goat’s Guts surf forecasts.

Australian Bureau of Meteorology; Manly Hydraulics Laboratory; James Cook
University; US Navy; Japanese Meteorological Agency; University of Hawaii;
Flinders University, SA; Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD.


Hey, we do our best. But we are talking about Mother Nature and who can tell
her what to do. Neither the Goat, Roger or Don accept any responsibility or liability
for use of the forecasts and any action taken based on the surf forecasts.

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